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The Surface Revealed

A few months ago Microsoft announced their entry into the new tablet market with the Surface. For the first time in a long time, people were really excited about what Redmond was showing off. With an Apple style event to kick things off, they showed off a really cool piece of technology. However, they got one thing wrong, there was no price, and no ship date. Unlike the 'king of big reveals' that Apple is, Microsoft forgot this crucial step when you have a room full of hungry journalists and bloggers looking for information.

All is better now though, since the pricing on the RT (ARM based) version has been revealed. The base level model with 32GB of memory will be launched with a $499 price tag. That puts it right in the ballpark of the iPad, which is really where Microsoft needed it to be. For an extra $100 you can get it with their revolutionary keyboard cover. Considering you'll pay ~$100 for a decent Apple keyboard cover, this isn't too bad of a pricing model. I haven't yet seen pricing on the Intel based models, so perhaps the main question is will the RT model interest enough people to be competitive.

I've been rooting for a 3rd player in the phone and tablet space, and the Surface has a bit of a chance. I'm sure Microsoft can still come up with a dozen more ways to doom it. But for now, as we wait for the big event next week, we can hope that perhaps we may be seeing the emergence of a three way race for our mindshare.

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